Monday Morning Inspiration: Marathon

Yesterday I joined the crowds in Brooklyn and cheered on both friends and strangers at the NYC marathon, which is hands down one of the best reasons to live in NYC. It was an exceptionally beautiful day and the energy from both the runners and the crowd was nothing less then 150% contagious.  Congratulations to all of you who made it happen, particularly my friend Maureen who completed her second marathon!

image via flickr

UPDATE:  Check out this awesome two minute time lapse video

GrandOpening + OurGoods = Trade School

tradeschool Collaborations are a thing of beauty.  This month, Grand Opening and Our Goods have teamed up and formed Trade School, a month long experiment that offers classes in a variety of subjects including Business School for Artists, How to Make Butter, Intro to Participatory Learning & Action, Grantwriting and a number of other fascinating topics.  Trade School omits the dollar system and operates solely on barter. Teachers are compensated in work space and students pay for class by bringing goods to trade.  I signed up for "PLAY: Improv for Ideation," a class that teaches a series of interactive ideation and process exercises aimed at informing and enhancing the creative practice.  In exchange, the teachers, the duo behind MakerHappener, have asked for any of the following:

One-time access to a laser cutter 1 hour of Wordpress assistance A jar of organic peanut butter or raw local honey Stumptown coffee beans A winter coat for a 70 pound black lab Art Plants Cool maps or art books

I love the idea of people coming together across a variety of disciplines to share resources and teach one another.  Who wants to join me?

Fashion's Night out

On Septmeber 10th, 13 countries will celebrate Fashion's Night Out, a global initiative to promote retail and celebrate fashion.  This year, they created a great PSA which talks about all the benefits the fashion industry brings to New York City. "Next only to finance, fashion is the second-largest sector of industry in New York City—the headquarters of more than 800 fashion companies employing 175,000 people and generating $10 billion in total wages."

They have also decided that all proceeds from the sale of the official Fashion’s Night Out T-shirt will  be donated to the National September 11 Memorial & Museum.

They've planned some great events and some really exciting collaborations.

What I'm looking forward to:

Rag and Bone will turn their store into a full Irish pub complete with sawdust floors and an Irish band

Vera Wang is collaborating with StudioBooth!

BAND OF OUTSIDERS is partnering up with Opening Ceremony.  The THAI TIE TRUCK  will sell Band of Outsiders ties made exclusively for the evening, as well as a special thai-inspired dessert prepared by Christina Tosi of Momofuku that you can only get with your purchase of one of the ties

Kiki de Montparnasse will have champagne and an erotic photo booth.

Kirna Zabête will have Narciso Rodriguez, Lazaro Hernandez of Proenza Schouler, Thakoon Panichgul, Jason Wu, and Peter Som on hand to debut their exclusive items for Kirna Zabête:  Narciso Rodriguez photo collages, Proenza Schouler print tote bags, Thakoon one-of-a-kind dresses, Jason Wu fall 2009 fashion sketches and Peter Som's limited-edition aprons.

Discovered: The Jewels of NY

flatbread pots-de-creme

My dear friend Bryn over at paper tastebuds did a lovely post about Diana Yen and Lisel Arroyo, the masterminds behind The Jewels of NY, a blog that beautifully intersects their talents in cooking, photography, design and just overall gorgeousness.  Included with the photographs are recipes for those who want to try and create their magic.  Here you can find the recipe for the Chocolate Pots de Crème with Rosemary Whipped Cream pictured above  and below is the recipe for the beautiful Flatbread.  Enjoy!

Caramelized Fennel and Tomato Flatbread Serves 2

1/4 ounce package active dry yeast 1/2 cup warm water 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus 1/4 cup for kneading dough 1 large egg 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 1 1/2 teaspoons salt 3 to 4 campari tomatoes, sliced 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 1/2 of a fennel bulb, sliced, reserve about 1/4 cup fennel fronds 2 cloves of garlic, mashed into paste 1/4 cup fontina cheese, grated 1 teaspoon lemon juice zest of half a lemon fleur de sel to serve

In a small bowl stir together yeast and warm water, let stand for about 5 minutes.

Beat together egg, 1 tablespoon of oil and salt, set aside. In a medium bowl, add in 1 1/2 cups of flour and create a well in the center of the flour. Add yeast mixture into the well then add the egg mixture. Using a fork or your hands combine mixture until dough forms. Transfer dough to a floured surface and knead until stickiness is gone and feels smooth and elastic, adding flour as necessary. Add 1 tablespoon of oil into a bowl, place dough in oiled bowl and turn to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature for 1 hour.

In a large skillet over moderate heat melt butter then add in the fennel, salt and pepper to taste. Cook and stir occasionally until tender and golden, about 15-20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375°F

On a floured surface, knead the dough and roll out to a 1/4 inch thickness. Roll the dough loosely around the rolling pin and unroll it over a 19-by 10-inch rectangle cast iron skillet. Brush dough with remaining olive oil then evenly distribute garlic paste, cheese, caramelized fennel, tomatoes, lemon zest, lemon juice and fennel fronds. Bake flatbread for 35 minutes until crust is golden brown. Sprinkle with fleur de sel and serve warm.

au revoir simone

aurevoirsimone It is very rare that a day goes by where I don't feel blessed, fortunate or lucky.  It is only 3:28pm on this Monday afternoon and I have already felt that feeling a handful of times; it helps that I woke up to gorgeous sunny skies.  After opening the curtains, I made a delicious breakfast of fresh ricotta, thinly sliced tomatoes, fresh basil leaves and a drizzle of aged balsamic on toasted whole wheat bread. But I'm not here to tell you that I'm in a good mood or had what I deem the perfect breakfast.  What I'm here to write about is how damn lucky I am to have so many talented and amazing friends.  Tonight, after an event at The Eldridge with the Dining and Libations Society, I’ll make my way out to Williamsburg to cheer on Au Revoir Simone, an amazingly talented group of musicians.

Our friend, Erika, who plays in the band, graduated with us from Skidmore College and we’ve been fortunate to stay in touch with her since then.  Tonight they are surprising people and doing a small show in Williamsburg.  Then they head off to Europe to release their new album, Still Night, Still Light.

Congratulations lovely ladies.  This is an amazing journey to watch from the sidelines!

You can preorder the album here.

au-revoir-simone-still-night-still-light-thumb

Tweenbots

title Kacie Kinzer put together an interesting social experiment: Could a robot navigate Washington Square Park purely by the help of strangers?  Let's see what the collaboration of a Tweenbot and park goers can do.  "Tweenbots are human-dependent robots that navigate the city with the help of pedestrians they encounter. Rolling at a constant speed, in a straight line, Tweenbots have a destination displayed on a flag, and rely on people they meet to read this flag and to aim them in the right direction to reach their goal."  Surprisingly, on its first outing, thanks to the  help of 29 people,  it traversed through Washington Square Park in just 42 minutes.  Here is a video of Tweenbot's adventure.

Here is a link to more of the robots that Kacie is working on as part of her thesis at ITP

*via Laughing Squid

hello health part I

hellohealth Let’s see now….I’ve been sick for the past month

coughing √ larengitis √ sneezing √ sore throat √ swollen glands  √ pink eye in BOTH eyes √

Today I called Hello health.  The founder, Dr. Jay Parkinson recently presented at Pecha Kucha.

“Hello Health serves as your old-fashioned neighborhood doctor, remodeled for today's lifestyle— an experience found nowhere else in health care. And, on top of being accessible and affordable, we focus on you, as a real live, busy person.”

How does it work you ask?  You pay $35/month, schedule your own appointment online and depending on your needs your appointment is billed accordingly.

Simple Visits (quick, easy or online)$100 Moderate Visits (the middle ground)$150 Complex Visits (long and complicated) $200

How exciting is it that I have an appointment booked next week with a doctor who:

-believes in treating the whole me -treats the same problems and does the same procedures as any primary care doctor -will email, IM and video chat with me if I need a followup or have a question -gives free generic medications for urgent problems and online prescription refills.

Part II to follow after my appointment on Tuesday.  Stay posted.

Yasmine Chatila

4 The Bachelor, Wall Street, Friday 11:34 PM

I recently had dinner with some new and old friends at Palma, a lovely Mediterranean Italian restaurant in the West Village.  The meal was served family style, which was conducive to this type of gathering- lots of laughter, random topics and interesting stories.  I sat next to a very talented artist, Yasmine Chatila, whose work I find beautiful.  She finds the subtle intricacies in her subjects and somehow each piece is quiet yet disturbing in the same breath.

From April 9 until May 16th her work will be up at the gallery, Affirmation Arts.  The show, Surveillance, curated by Rachel D. Vancelette features other artists including Tomory Dodge, Jeffrey Gibson, Charles Harlan, Shin il Kim, Caitlin Maloney, and Angelo Plessas.

Affirmation Arts 523 West 37 Street, New York NY 10018 Gallery Hours: Monday-Friday 10-6, Sat, 11 - 5 pm

Old News

oldnews The other day we bumped into my friend Michael Mandiberg while walking through Chelsea.  Michael and I went to high school together and while we have both been in NYC for a number of years, we only occasionally see each other.  When we ran into him he had just finished dropping off his latest addition to the show up at Postmaster’s gallery.  He is currently a Senior Fellow at Eyebeam and is working on some really fascinating projects.  Check out the show and spend some time exploring his work.

Good Work: Le Labo

lelabo3 I often talk to people about what differentiates one company from another. For me, the companies that set themselves apart are the ones that understand what it means to be a brand and use their brand to create a unique experience for their consumers.

One of my holiday gifts this year was a bottle of perfume from Le Labo. I walked into a Le Labo boutique while in LA last year but didn’t know which scent suited me best. After the holidays, Dan and I went to the Le Labo store on Elizabeth Street and picked out a bottle of Rose 31, a combination of musk, rose, cedar wood and cumin. They actually market it as a masculine scent but I smelled it and loved it.

The company is unique in the sense that all the perfumes are “made to order,” which according to Le Labo, guarantees that the freshest, fullest fragrance is captured. All the perfumes come in a simple vintage looking bottle and a label personalized with your name. It is then packaged beautifully into a box with the same personalized label. It is impossible to walk out of their store, your customized bottle of perfume in hand, and not feel as if you are holding something unique and special.

Le Labo is a great example of a company that combines high-quality products, interesting packaging and a unique retail environment to create a memorable brand experience.

Le Labo has three boutiques- NY, Tokyo and LA. It is also available at Colette in Paris, Liberty’s in London, and select Barney's locations.